September 29, 2008

Review: Blue Genes by Christopher Lukas

Late one night Christopher (Kit) Lukas received a phone call with news that his brother, the gifted journalist J. Anthony Lukas, had committed suicide. Tragically their mother also committed suicide when they were young boys. Kit and his brother were never told how she died and no one spoke of the family’s history of depression and bipolar disorder. The legacy of guilt and grief haunted Kit and Tony throughout their lives.

Despite both brothers achieving remarkable success, Tony as a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, they suffered bouts of depression. Kit was able to confront his family’s troubled past and find happiness but Tony remained depressed which ultimately led him to take his own life.

Being that this book was a memoir I just couldn’t connect with any of the characters. It may have helped if I was familiar with Tony’s writing or felt some sort of connection to the brothers but the writing just didn’t pull me in. I feel this was more personal for Kit than a story that needed to be shared. I can see where the book might be helpful for anyone who has been affected by a loved one’s suicide but it just didn’t click for me.

September 28, 2008

Review: City Dog by Alison Pace

Amy Dodge owner of a West Highland White Terrier named Carlie and author of the bestselling children’s book series, Run, Carlie, Run! has a dilemma. She has a major case of writers block. All she can think about is how different life is from what her plans were when she optimistically moved to New York from Colorado over 10 years ago. She’s divorced, she still hasn’t started writing the next Great American Novel and every guy she dates she compares unrealistically to the dashing (but fictional) Scottish explorer staring in her Carlie books. Now Carlie is offered a starring role in her own television show and Amy’s world takes a surreal turn.

Soon Amy finds herself getting cropped out of Carlie’s many photo opportunities and she can’t get the image of her Scottish explorer out of her head. Plus the city she once loved begins to lose its appeal. Amy must figure out what needs to happen in order to change her life and take her and Carlie exactly where they need to be.

I completely judged this book by its super cute cover and was a little let down with the results. The story just didn’t catch my interest and I almost didn’t finish the book. The story is told in three voices; Amy, Carlie and Robert Maguire (the fictional Scottish explorer). In my opinion it would have been better off with just Amy’s and possibly Carlie’s but with Robert’s thrown in it just didn’t work for me and I can’t exactly pinpoint why. I did however like the way the book ended and consider it the only thing that saved the book from being too bad.

September 26, 2008

Review: Any Given Doomsday by Lori Handeland

Former policewoman Elizabeth Phoenix once used her unique skills as a psychic to help fight injustice. But when her partner was killed Liz’s guilt forced her to leave the police department and work as a bartender. While working one afternoon Liz heard a voice shout “Leave” and followed the inner feeling to rush to her foster mother’s home. Liz finds Ruthie viciously murdered gets knocked unconscious at the scene. When Liz wakes up her whole existence is turned upside down.

Ruthie has passed on a gift and Liz has now become a powerful seer. Teaming up with her a former lover who once betrayed her is Liz’s only option to learn the truth about Ruthie’s killer. Jimmy opens Liz’s eyes to a supernatural war that has raged since the dawn of time in which innocent people are hunted by evil beings disguised as humans. But Jimmy has a secret that will rock Liz to her core and put the survival of the human race in peril.

I’m very new to the urban fantasy genre and I’ve read other reviews of this book that knocked it down a lot but I loved this book. I can agree with more than one reviewer on the one aspect that takes my rating from a 5 to a 4. There are too many “evil beings” in the book. If Handeland would have kept it to 2-3 different types of beings I feel the book would have benefitted more. Other than that I loved the writing and the interaction of Liz and the two other main characters. The storyline was a lot different than I guessed it would be from the synopsis, prequel short story and the opening chapters. I recommend this book to both long-time urban fantasy fans and newbies like me. I’m looking forward to book 2 in the series, Doomsday Can Wait due out May 2009.


September 24, 2008

Review: The Best You'll Ever Have by Shannon Mullen

Okay ladies, and guys for that matter, this book is a must! It was a quick one night read and I learned a lot of great techniques for better sex with my husband. Mullen spent years learning about every last nerve in the female body—and every sex toy under the sun. She interviewed sex educators, doctors, and therapists. The book features tips such as how to find the elusive G-spot, how to feel sexually stimulated from head to toe, how to tell your partner exactly what turns you on in bed, how to achieve knock-your-socks-off orgasms whenever you want them and so much more.

What I also liked about the book was that Mullen shares stories from different women that I could definitely relate to. The writing is witty and clever and the information, diagrams and pictures are not at all crass or offensive. I’ve already been reaping the rewards of picking this book up and you should too.

September 22, 2008

Review: The Charlemagne Pursuit by Steve Berry


In this fourth novel featuring the one-time top operative for the U.S. Justice Department, Cotton Malone, Cotton sets out to discover the full story behind his father’s death thirty-eight years ago. Cashing in a favor with his ex-boss Stephanie Nelle, Cotton learns a shocking the shocking secret that the Navy covered up. His father died in a top-secret submarine mission beneath the ice shelves of Antarctica.

Within minutes of receiving the highly classified file Cotton finds himself in danger. In order to save himself and learn the truth behind the cover-up he teams up with twin sisters Dorothea Lindauer and Christl Falk whose father also died on the submarine. Filled with unease about working with the twins Cotton cautiously embarks on a perilous journey by solving clues left in a diary found in Charlemagne’s tomb.

Filled with non-stop action, The Charlemagne Pursuit kept me on the edge of my seat the entire book. Berry threw curve balls left and right that kept me second guessing who was a good guy and who was just plain up to no good. I actually cried at the end and even though the book is 528 pages I wished it would have gone on for 500 more. Having read all three of the previous Cotton Malone books I can honestly say that this book is the best one yet but if you’ve haven’t read the previous three* this one does stand alone. I HIGHLY recommend this book to all thriller and suspense lovers.

*What are you waiting for??? Go buy and read the other three Cotton Malone books!!

  1. The Templar Legacy

  2. The Alexandria Link

  3. The Venetian Betrayal

September 6, 2008

Review: The Book of Matthew: A Macabre Novel of Suspense by Thomas White

San Francisco Homicide Inspector Clemson Yao and realtor/police reservist Angie Strachan are put to the test when Angie discovers the body of a young girl at one of her real estate listings. The two, along with a few side characters, are drawn into a desperate race against a twisted serial killer, who refers to his murders as “messies”.

The murderer is identified as Mathew. An abused boy who grew into a monster that researches and documents the some of the most bizarre methods of killings throughout history. Clem and Angie are frustratingly always one step behind the madman but are able to identify two potential victims. They work against odds to save these two lives but Matthew has put a lot of time and thought into his crimes and it seems no one can stop him.

I have to say that the subtitle really hits the mark. This is a macabre novel of suspense. From Matthew’s research to the recounting of Clem’s nightmares White really creeps me out and I love it even though I can attribute one really bad nightmare to the book. I look forward to reading more from Thomas White and recommend this book to all suspense and horror lovers.

September 4, 2008

Review: Breach of Trust By Kimber Chin

For years, Anne James has played a dangerous game, secretly manipulating venture capitalist Philippe Lamont into financing her clients start up businesses. Finally Philippe runs across the one person who is so desperate for financing that he breaks his contract with Anne and reveals her identity to Philippe. Now Philippe has manipulated Anne and she must come to work for him for three months or risk him cutting off her business contacts.

As they begin to work together Philippe is drawn to Anne, with her sharp business mind, in a completely un-businesslike manner. Anne is the total opposite of the tall, blonde Barbie types that he normally dates. It’s hard for him to resist her and somehow she touches a place in his heart that he never thought anyone would reach.

But in the cut-throat world of business you never know who you can trust and when a client’s confidential business plan is leaked to a competitor Philippe accuses Anne and fires her. Can Anne prove it wasn’t her and win back his love? Will she ever find the person who betrayed her?

This page turner keeps you on the edge of your seat through the ins and outs of business financing. As the story unfolds you are drawn into the heat between Anne and Philippe. I loved that the women in the book all had sharp brains, even the blonde Barbies Philippe dated were not portrayed as bimbos. It was a fun read that I recommend to lovers of both romance and thrillers.