Jan 31, 2014

The Quiet Game

The Quiet Game (Penn Cage, #1)The Quiet Game by Greg Iles
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Penn Cage #1

Penn returns to Natchez, MS after his wife's death to make a home for his daughter with his parents. A chance meeting with the publisher of the local paper (Caitlin Masters) has him embroiled in unraveling a thirty year old "supposedly" unsolved murder.

But everyone is keeping secrets and if Penn can't unraveling the secrets fast enough the price of his determination to bring the killer to justice may be his death. Many know who the killer is including members of the FBI. Penn finally gets retired FBI Agent Stone to talk but they are ambushed by hired killers. Penn barely escapes with his life and he can't be sure if Stone is still alive or will make it to the trial in time.

Sheriffs Deputy Ike the Spike confesses to planting the explosives after being blackmailed by Ray Presley but Presley guns him down before the trial. Only Penn's quick thinking prevents Presley from killing him too.

Presley learns that Judge Marston set him up for a drug bust in order to appease Hoover and realizes that all his years of being loyal to Marston and protecting his secrets were misguided. Presley goes to confront Marston but Livy (Marston's daughter and Penn's ex-girlfriend) shoots Presley.

With the majority of his witnesses dead or discredited Penn doesn't have a prayer of winning the case until Jenny Doe (Livy's illegitimate daughter) shows up with a tape of Marston and Clayton Lacour discussing the murder

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Anti-Choicer Claims Any Clump of Cells Containing Human DNA a Person

Chambers’ letter is riddled with errors. First she states that “Living things are composed of cells and grow and that if they contain human DNA they are persons”. By her definition if a human had a tumor which is a collection of living cells that grow containing human DNA the tumor would be a person. Which I think we can all agree is patently false, obviously the definition of personhood involves a bit more than a collection of cells containing human DNA.

She states that if anti-choicers get their way “No mother has to die because she cannot have an abortion”. This has been proven patently false in the case of Savita Halappanavar who even though she was miscarrying was denied an abortion because there was a fetal heartbeat and she was in a Catholic Country. The official report determined the Irish abortion laws were a key factor in her death.

Closer to home we have Marlise Munoz who has been viewed as nothing more than an incubator by the Texas Hospital who refused to remove her from life support at the request of her family because she was 14 weeks pregnant, at the time of her death. Two months later a Judge has ruled that the Brain Dead woman can be removed from life support.

Women deserve to be the ones making the decisions concerning their reproduction. Their health should not be endangered because they are pregnant and their corpses shouldn’t be used as incubators for embryos.

Jan 27, 2014

Raven's Tears

Raven's TearsRaven's Tears by Michael Matson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Erotic Fantasy at it's best.

Raven is serving a sentence as a cop, thanks to his Father's wealth and title, after being convicted as a criminal when he meets Lady Angelique Blakesly a devout and highly placed member of the conservative Guardian Paladin Church. His secret affair with her soon turns to love and in his arms he finds salvation from the life he despises.

But Angelique has a few secrets and when the priceless Torg-Dernad goes missing the trail Raven uncovers leads him to Angelique. Unable to see her sold into slavery, but unable to trust his love he walks away.

Book 1 of The Raven and the Iris series.

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Jan 23, 2014

The Pagan Lord

The Pagan Lord (The Saxon Stories, #7)The Pagan Lord by Bernard Cornwell
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

England is at peace and Uhtred is unwanted after he kills a priest. His eldest son is accepted into the priesthood and is now known as Father Judas. Uhtred leaves to go Viking and hopefully reclaim Bebbanburg. Uhtred fails to reclaim Bebbanburg but kills his Uncle (AElfric) and takes his cousin's wife and son hostage. Alfred's bastard Osferth falls in love with her and Uhtred gives Osferth the boy.

Meanwhile Cnut has devised a scheme to usurp Mercia from Aethelred (Aetheflaed's husband). Uhtred hurries back to foil his plot. He finds where Cnut hide, his wife and children and takes them hostage. He then pretends to kill Cnut's daughter. Cnut follows Uhtred and eventually corners him. Just when all looks lost Pyrlig shows up with his Welsh warriors. Still outnumbered Uhtred's forces are managing to hold when King Edward shows up and Cnut and his men start to flee. Uhtred challenges Cnut to a duel. Cnut is killed and Uhtred is in a coma.

The ending of the book makes it sound as if Uhtred died, but in the Historical Notes Cornwell reveals that Uhtred will live.

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Jan 19, 2014

The Way of Kings

The Way of Kings (The Stormlight Archive, #1)The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

There were 10 heralds but 9 survived the Desolation and choose not to return to the place of pain and fire (breaking the Oathpact), they just walked away leaving their blades behind. The 10th Herald Taln was left behind to bind the Oathpact.

Kaladin was a dark-eyed son of a doctor (Lirin). On Roshar eye color determines your status. Light-eyes are rulers. When the Brightlord of their village dies he leaves soul stones to Kaladin's family so that Kaladin can study to be a doctor. The new Brightlord (Roshone) is angered by this as he wants the wealth for himself. Brightlord Roshone tries to turn the village against Kaladin's family. When Brightlord Roshone and his son are injured in a dangerous hunt, he blames Kaladin's Father for his son's death. To get even he drafts Kaladin's younger brother (Tien) into the army. Kaladin chooses to go with him to protect him but is helpless to prevent Tien's death. He then tries to protect the young men in his squadron but when they are run down by a Shardbearer he is helpless to save them. When the Shardbearer attacks Brightlord Amaram his guard flees but Kaladin brings the Shardbearer down saving Amaram. Traditionally the killer of the Shardbearer gets the Shardblade and Shardplate (which are priceless and convey wealth and prestige on the owner) but associating it with the death of his squad he doesn't want it and gives it to another member of the squad. Unfortunately Amaram wants it for himself he kills the survivors of the squad and sells Kaladin into slavery to cover up his theft of the Shardblade and Shardplate. Kaladin finds himself a Bridgeman owned by Highprince Sadeas (who uses bridgemen as fodder against the Parshendi). When Kaladin figures out a way to use the bridge as a shield against the Parshendi arrows Sadeas has him left out in a highstorm to die, but Kaladin lives. More determined then ever to keep the men of Bridge 4 alive, Kaladin secretly trains them as soldiers and they prepare to escape. Their chance comes when Sadeas betrays Highprince Dalinar (The King's Uncle) by leaving him stranded on a plateau surrounded by Parshendi. Unable to leave Dalinar and his troops to die, Kaladin and his men (Rock, Moash, Skar, Drehy, Sigzil (Wit's servant), Lopen, and Teft) go back for them. Against the odds they are able to save Dalinar, his eldest son (Adolin) and some of his troops. Dalinar promises to protect Kaladin and his men from Sadeas. When they get back to camp Dalinar confronts Sadeas about his betrayal and demands he sell the bridgemen to him. Sadeas refuses until Dalinar offers his Shardblade in exchange for all the bridgemen. Dalinar then offers Kaladin and his men positions as his honor guard.

Highprince Dalinar has been seeing visions of the past during highstorms. Not sure if the visions are real or if he can trust them he considers abdicating and letting Adolin take over. But in the end Dalinar realizes the "Blackthorn" is needed to unite his people (the Alethi) . Armed with the knowledge that King Elhokar cut his own saddle girth. Which allowed Sadeas the chance to manipulate him, he demands the Elhokar make him Highprince of War.

Szeth (the assassin) is ordered by Highprince Taravangian to kill Dalinar.

Shallan gives up her plan to steal Jasnah's fabrial in order to really work with her. They discover that the Voidbringers are the Parshendi.

Wit awaits Taln's arrival.

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Jan 16, 2014

College Fund for the Czubek Kids

Frozen in Time (Blood of the Gods Book 1)

Frozen In Time (Blood of the Gods, #1)Frozen In Time by Marie Symeou
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Philip is very much in love with his wife, when she dies in childbirth he is heartbroken and joins the army. There he falls under the spell of a woman who appears to look a great deal like his deceased wife. It turns out to be the blood drinker Scylla, after she turns him Philip is determined to destroy her.

Meanwhile his wife is reborn as the Swan Lady, Sirona, in the enchanted paradise of Demar, he goes there to get branches from a tree that only grows there and falls in love with her. He begs her to wait for him to return from turning Scylla to stone. But while he is away she marries Finn and returns to the mortal world where she begins to age.

By the time Philip finds her again she is an old woman on her deathbed. He promises her "Death is not the end"


Book 2 Bound by Death

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Jan 10, 2014

The Unquiet

The Unquiet (includes In Death, #33.5)The Unquiet by J.D. Robb
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A nice collection of love stories.

Chaos in Death - J.D. Robb
Her Greatest Treasure - Mary Blayney
Dear One - Paricia Gaffney
The Unforgiven - Ruth Ryan Langan
His Brother's Keeper - Mary Kay McComas



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Jan 9, 2014

77 Shadow Street

77 Shadow Street77 Shadow Street by Dean Koontz
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I had difficulty getting into the book until the end. It constantly switches from different characters POV making it confusing and difficult to follow and there are plots within plots.

There is the mass murder Mickey Dime who makes his home at the Pendleton, and who is trying to dispose of the body of his brother undetected.

Then there is the building taking it's residents on trips through time. First the past and then a disturbing future where pogroms have been used to wipe out humanity. Slowly the residents come to realize that the creator of the AI (The One) that has destroyed their world is amongst them leaving them with a choice when they return safely to the present. Do they allow him to live or do they exterminate him before he can exterminate humanity.

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Jan 6, 2014

Innocence

InnocenceInnocence by Dean Koontz
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I haven't decided if I like this book yet, although it is a sweet love story. Apparently merely looking at Addison's eyes and the eyes of those like him incites people to violence. The midwife tried to kill Addison when he was born. His Mother made several attempts on his life, that she regretted and didn't go through with but when he was 8 she sent him away and killed herself. In the city he found one like him who he called "Father" and they lived in the tunnels beneath the city only coming out at night when everyone else was asleep or during extremely stormy weather when most people would be indoors (My question is why didn't the buy some sunglasses/tinted glasses).

After his "Fathers" death he was alone until he meet the Goth Girl (who had the brains to invest in tinted contact lenses), who is being hunted by her Father's murderer. Addison attempts to help her and is thrilled when she offers him first friendship and then love. To his amazement he discovers that she is "like" him.

What starts out as a simple expose the murderer plot soon evolves into a mystical ending of the world with only Addison and those like him surviving.

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Jan 4, 2014

Charon's Claw

Charon's Claw (Forgotten Realms: Neverwinter, #3; Legend of Drizzt, #22)Charon's Claw by R.A. Salvatore
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Drizzt, Dahlia and Artemis Entreri succeed in in wresting Charon's Claw from Herzgo Alegni but in the battle Guen is captured and is being held by Draygo Quick in the Shadowfell. Quick used "The Shifter" to offer a trade to Drizzt he would release Guen if Drizzt would return Charon's Claw to him. But Drizzt's moral code will not allow him to return Artemis Entreri to the slavery the sword imposes on him.

Drizzt, Dahlia and Entreri set out for Gauntlgrym so they can destroy the sword, by throwing it in the fire. The sentient sword tries to implant thoughts of jealousy and hatred of Entreri in Drezzt's mind in hopes he will kill Entreri and choose not to destroy the sword. Followed by Herzgo Alegni and his allies they are fighting a desperate battle when the drow appear. Artemis' quick thinking of proclaiming them emissaries of Bregan D'aerthe earn them the drow's temporary help, and gives Drizzt hope that Jarlaxle is still alive as the drow seem to believe he is.

The trio find a way to the forge and destroy the sword, to their surprise the destruction of the sword doesn't lead to Entreri's death. They also receive help from Amber Gristle O' Maul (Ambergris) who has been sabotaging the Shadovar in order to help them from loyalty to Bruenor, once she realized who Drizzt is. Drizzt also discovers that Effron is Dhalia's son by Alegni.

It seems as if Drizzt will soon be reunited with another old friend Pwent is awakened and is now a vampire.

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