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1. Cause of Death - Patricia Cornwell
The seventh Dr Kay Scarpetta novel. Used to be a great Cornwall fan, but found the later novels had lost their sparkle. Read this one after a long gap. Enjoyed it even if the ending was rather rushed.
2. Dinner for Two -Mike Gayle
Bit of fluff audio book. Listen to audio books when I am sewing. Easy listening.
3. Dance of the Gods - Nora Roberts.
Picked this up, as she is always rated in the New York Times list. This is the middle book of the Circle Trilogy, which I didn't realise. I still read it and thoroughly enjoyed the vampire slaying, magic and romance. I might even get the first and last book to fill in the blanks. Not my usual choice, but it was an easy read.
4. The Red Dahlia - Linda La Plante.
Audio book about a copycat killer, who brutally murders a young girl, mirroring an infamous 1940's case in Los Angeles. The story was a little slow to begin with, but was interesting, nevertheless.
5. A Whispered Name - William Broderick.
This book was advertised in our library, as it had won a crime writer's award. (sorry I can't give more details, as I have lost the poster!) It was written by an ex-monk, and based partially in a monastery. One of the monks is trying to solve a mystery about another dead monk. This monk had formerly been a soldier in WW1 and involved in a trial and subsequent shooting of a deserter. I found the beginning of the book very confusing, but I had to finish the book. The prose was beautiful, but I could only read a chapter at a time. Interesting, but I did not really enjoy it.
6. Medusa - Michael Dibdin. An Aurelio Zen Mystery.
This thirty year old murder is based in Italy. The story is politically based, and although I found some of the Italian terms confusing, at times, I enjoyed the story, and would read another Aurelio Zen mystery.
7. The Angel of Death - P.C Doherty.
Hugh Corbett, Edward I's clerk, is asked to solve the murder of Walter de Montefort at High Mass, because the person with most motive is Edward himself. Hugh is put under extreme pressure, but is able, in the end, to work out how de Montfort was killed, using pure logic. An easy, listen-to audio tape.
8. Black Dog - Stephen Booth.
Teenager Laura Vernon is missing, then found by pensioner, Harry Dickinson, but the police believe he is hiding something. Young Detective Ben Cooper and ruthless Det. Diane Fry must understand the past to understand the present. No one is perfect, or as innocent as they see. Lots of twists and tuns in the plot.
9. The Time Traveller's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger.
This is a love story of Clare and Henry who met when Clare was six and Henry was thirty-six, and were married when Clare was twenty-one and Henry thirty. Once I got it into my head, that Henry's age changed, so that he could be younger or older, whilst Clare stayed the same, I really got into the book. It showed that time-traveling, in Henry's case, could not be controlled, and therefore the situations, in which he found himself could not be controlled. A really moving book, which made me think. Lovely.
10. Love and Devotion - Erica James.
Harriet Swift has to give up her flat, her job, her boyfriend and life as she knew it, because her sister and brother-in-law die, leaving two children, who Harriet has promised to look after. This event causes a chain reaction to family members and friends, and nothing will ever be the same in Harriet's life again. A big book, but a good, easy read.
11. Souls of Angels - Thomas Eddison.
Set in Los Angeles in the nineteenth century, Sister Rea, a Beneditine Nun, returns to her home to try and save her father, the Patron, from being executed in eight days time for the murder of a pregnant prostitute. This is a tale of love, redemption and revenge. The Patron is seemingly mad, dressing up daily in different cosumes, and who is the sinister figure in a brown suit, who is trying to murder Sister Rea? An extremely unusual story. I did not enjoy it, but it had a good twist at the end.
12. The Cat who smelled a Rat - Lillian Jackson Braun.
Set in the village of Pickax in Moore County, this tale is a blend of crime, silky cats and endearing characters. It is also free of violence and harsh language, which is most unusual nowadays. Koko and Yum Yum, two, highly intelligent cats, help their owner, Qwilleran, solve the case of the burning fire houses.
13 & 14. Morrigan's Cross, (Dance of the Gods), Valley of Silence - Nora Roberts.
The library van had book 1 & 3 of the vampire trilogy (see review No.3), so I started back at the beginning of the circle. This is a rip-roaring adventure, vampires, stakings and bloodthirsty fights. Great fun. An easy read.
15. Getting Mad, Getting Even - Annie Sanders. I really enjoyed this book! It was poignant, funny and really well-observed. Two friends run a domestic agency for the uber-rich, supplying plumbers, maids and even getting a client's dog dyed to match its owner's dress. Then, one evening, they are visited by a lady, who asks them to help her get revenge on an erring husband. The girls do it so successfully, that the word spreads, and the fun, and trouble, starts from there. Great read!
16. When the Bough Breaks - Johnathan Kellerman. When a little girl witnesses the prelude to a double, gruesome murder, Alex Delaware, child psychologist, is called in to help the police to see if he can get her to talk. The plot twists and turns, as do the pages! Really clever plot. I am definitely going to read Mr Kellerman again.
17. Picnic - Lesley McDowell. I absolutely detested this book. Why did I read it? It started off quite well, about an academic who changes job, and who also has a fraught relationship with her mother. The grandmother went missing, and the mother will not tell the daughter the circumstances. The reader has to get hints from innuendo, at the beginning, and the author obviously draws on her experiences as a former academic, to describe the angst the daughter feels in her new job. The grandmother was the only one who had had the nerve to get up and go. I felt like telling the rest of the characters to follow suit!
18.Betrayal in Death - J.D. Robb. Full of gory murders, fast pace action, futuristic detecting and gorgeous men. Who could ask for more? Nora Roberts under the pseudonym of J. D. Robb at her best.
19. Blindfold - Lyndon Stacy. Gideon Blake, artist and animal behaviourist is blindfolded and kidnapped and is told to tame a wild stallion, without taking the blindfold off. Thus starts the adventure, which leas to arson, aggression, violence and romance. Quite a good story, but how the hero survived so many punch ups is something else!
21. Ratcatchers - James McGee. Audio book. This story touches on the beginnings of the Bow Street Runners, espionage, conspiracy, underwater submersibles, and Napoleon's spies in Britain. What has the highwayman got to do with the sultry French emigree and Hawkhead, the Bow Street Runner, who has to track him down. Look forward to the next one.
22. In the Dark House - Deborah Crombie. Great plot which twists and turns. Lots of seaparate incidents, from fires in warehouses, a hospital administrator who disappears, a 10 year old girl held hostage by an anonymous woman and at the centre DC Kincaid and DI Gemma James working to get it all worked out. Great listen!
23.The last Wish - Andrzej Sapkowski This author is seemingly a European superstar, and I can understand why. Tis story was translated from Polish, and i could not put it down. Geralt is a witcher who wanders from place to place, killing demons and monsters. Sounds pretty far fetched, but Sapkowsky weaves in well know fables and legends, but from a completely different perspective, to which we have been used. Really good story, well written (and translated). Will look out for more titles.
24. To Catch a Stone - Elizabeth Lord. A very poor attempt at a Catherine Cookson type story. The plot was unbelievable and boring. Would not read any more of her books!
25. Divided Loyalties - Patricia Scanlan. Really good story about family siblings and the dynamics between the two sisters and brother, the father and the husbands. I really enjoyed this and could not guess how it was going to end.
26. Playing Away - Adele Parks. Audio Book. Why is it that women who have everything, loving husband, good job, fantastic friends and a great social, fall for real creeps. You know the type - great looker who can't see past the end of his nose. All the women fall for him hook, line and sinker, but he is a LOUSE! Enjoyed this thoroughly! Great listen!
27. The Shipping News - Annie Proulx. Audio Book. I loved this book. It is full of fishing lore, off beat romance and wildly eccentric characters. Quoyle is a timid newspaperman, whose wife dies running away with another man. He retreats to Newfoundland with his two children and his non-conformist aunt. He survives the first harsh winter, and with help from the enduring, local characters, he eventually finds love and himself in this bleak climate.
28. A Death Left Hanging -Sally Spencer. Why did Margaret Dodds insist that she was innocent of a brutal murder, yet allow an incompetent barrister represent her? Why thirty years later does her daughter, a prominent QC insist her mother was wrongly hanged and that the case should be reopened? Not an overly exciting read, but it had a good twist at the end.
29. Forty Words For Sorrow - Giles Blunt. Det John Cardinal does not give up, when four teenagers go missing, in seemingly unrelated circumstances. Cardinal has a lot of personal stresses, with a depressed wife, who is frequently hospitalised, a daughter who is going to an extremely expensive university and the knowledge that he has done something corrupt in his early career. Two bodies are found, extremely mutilated, and the police realise it is only a matter of time before the latest victim will be killed in a horrendous manner. Sometimes there was too much detail of the manner in which the murders were committed, but a good listen, nevertheless. Not for the faint-hearted!
30. Strangers in Death -Nora Roberts. Usual format. Gutsy detective married to a jaw- dropping, good looking business man, who owns a good part of the world in 2060. Dalls has to find out who murdered Thomas Anders in such a scandalous and titillating manner. Easy read. Enjoyable.
31. Compulsion - Jonathan Kellerman. Picked this up without realising it was another Alexdelaware mystery. Who is the murderer who has butchered four women, without anyone being able to give a good description of the felon? Easy read, but maybe not as good as the last one.
32. These Foolish Things - Deborah Moggach. Imagine a retirement home set up in India to take care of British pensioners, who are looking for something different in their retirement. Cheap accommodation and plentiful staff and mango juice with their gin. This audio book was entertaining and different. I enjoyed listening to it.
33. To Kill a Witch - Bill Knox. This is the first Thane and Knox mystery I have read. It was a simple story, but I would read another by the same author.
34. The Cold Moon -Jeffrey Deaver. The Watchmaker is a cool, sadistic serial killer, or is he? This was a fantastic audio book. The turns and the twists in the plot kept on going right to the last minute of the cd. Thoroughly enjoyed this. Must get another John Deaver when I am at the library.