Genre: Thriller

Waiting on Wednesday – The Butcher by Jennifer Hillier

January 29, 2014 Bonnie Waiting on Wednesday 9 Comments

Waiting on Wednesday – The Butcher by Jennifer HillierThe Butcher by Jennifer Hillier
Published by Gallery Books on July 15, 2014
Pages: 352
Genres: Mystery, Thriller
Format: Hardcover
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: Creep

From the author of the acclaimed suspense novels Creep and Freak and whom Jeffery Deaver has praised as a "top of the line thriller writer," The Butcher is a high-octane novel about lethal secrets that refuse to die—until they kill again.

A rash of grisly serial murders plagued Seattle until the infamous "Beacon Hill Butcher" was finally hunted down and killed by police chief Edward Shank in 1985. Now, some thirty years later, Shank, retired and widowed, is giving up his large rambling Victorian house to his grandson Matt, whom he helped raise.

Settling back into his childhood home and doing some renovations in the backyard to make the house feel like his own, Matt, a young up-and-coming chef and restaurateur, stumbles upon a locked crate he’s never seen before. Curious, he picks the padlock and makes a discovery so gruesome it will forever haunt him… Faced with this deep dark family secret, Matt must decide whether to keep what he knows buried in the past, go to the police, or take matters into his own hands.

Meanwhile Matt’s girlfriend, Sam, has always suspected that her mother was murdered by the Beacon Hill Butcher—two years after the supposed Butcher was gunned down. As she pursues leads that will prove her right, Sam heads right into the path of Matt’s terrible secret.

A thriller with taut, fast-paced suspense, and twists around every corner, The Butcher will keep you guessing until the bitter, bloody end.

About Jennifer Hillier

JENNIFER HILLIER writes thrillers. She writes about dark, twisted people who do dark, twisted things. She will not apologize for this. ​

Born and raised in Toronto, she moved to Seattle in 2007, where she spent her first few months on American soil bemoaning her existence and writing her first novel. Now back in the Toronto area, she's working on her third book and missing the rain of the Pacific Northwest.

A member of International Thriller Writers, Mystery Writers of America, and the International Association of Crime Writers, Jennifer has always been drawn to dark fiction, even though she's scared of all things that go bump in the night.

CREEP, her debut thriller, is available now in all formats everywhere.

FREAK, her second novel, is out now in the US and Canada.

I have yet to get my hands on ‘Freak’ by Jennifer Hillier but I read ‘Creep’ and if you’re a fan of psychological thrillers it’s one you shouldn’t miss. I love the concept of The Butcher, sounds fantastically creepy!

What are you waiting on this Wednesday?

Waiting on Wednesday is hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine

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Release Day Feature + Giveaway! Mayhem by Sarah Pinborough

January 14, 2014 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Giveaways, Read in 2014, Release Day Feature 28 Comments

I received this book free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Release Day Feature + Giveaway! Mayhem by Sarah PinboroughMayhem by Sarah Pinborough
Series: Mayhem #1
Published by Jo Fletcher Books on January 14th 2014
Pages: 400
Genres: Historical Fiction, Horror, Mystery, Thriller
Format: ARC
Source: the Publisher
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: Murder, The Language of Dying, Behind Her Eyes

four-stars

A compulsively readable story that starts as a conventional murder mystery and morphs, by degrees, into a horrifying supernatural thriller,” The Guardian said of Mayhem.

A virtuoso fantasy writer, Sarah Pinborough has won numerous awards including the British Fantasy Award for Best Short Story. In Mayhem Pinborough turns her attention to one of the most baffling and notorious crime sprees in Victorian times. A new killer that newspapers have dubbed “The Torso Killer” is terrorizing the streets of London’s East End, his crimes obscured and overshadowed by the hysteria surrounding Jack the Ripper’s Whitechapel crimes. The victims are women too, but their dismembered bodies, wrapped in rags and tied up with string, are pulled out of the Thames–and the heads are missing. The murderer likes to keep them. Mayhem is a masterwork of narrative suspense: a supernatural thriller set in a shadowy, gaslit London, where killers stalk the cobbled streets and hide in plain sight.

About Sarah Pinborough

Sarah Pinborough is a critically acclaimed horror, thriller and YA author. In the UK she is published by both Gollancz and Jo Fletcher Books at Quercus and by Ace, Penguin and Titan in the US. Her short stories have appeared in several anthologies and she has a horror film Cracked currently in development and another original screenplay under option. She has recently branched out into television writing and has written for New Tricks on the BBC and has an original series in development with World Productions and ITV Global.

Sarah was the 2009 winner of the British Fantasy Award for Best Short Story, and has three times been short-listed for Best Novel. She has also been short-listed for a World Fantasy Award. Her novella, The Language of Dying was short-listed for the Shirley Jackson Award and won the 2010 British Fantasy Award for Best Novella.

‘What I seek – the thing I seek – brings mayhem and wickedness in its wake, spreading it like this choking fog across the city. It runs in the water of the river and it will destroy men’s souls.”

It’s the late 1800’s and London is being terrorized by the murders by a man dubbed Jack the Ripper, although recent murders have succeeded in overshadowing even those horrific crimes. These new murders are gruesome and appalling. The victims are all women, they are all dismembered postmortem yet their heads are never found among the remains. Dr. Thomas Bond is a police surgeon but is unable to stop himself from seeking out evidence to uncover this killer. He succeeds in uncovering far more than he thought possible and it is more monstrous and nightmarish than any imagination could concoct.

Jack the Ripper has always been a subject matter of interest for me and just the thought of another killer overshadowing the work of Jack the Ripper was enough for me to pick up Mayhem. I had never heard of ‘the Torso Killer’ before but Sarah Pinborough successfully brought his macabre story to life. Frightfully disturbing, these murders are described in vivid detail and the slight addition of the supernatural aspects were added almost proficiently and were not overdone.

The story is told mainly from the point of view of Dr. Thomas Bond but we’re given an occasional glimpse through a few other side characters. Each character was alluring and were each integral to understanding the story as a whole. Dr. Bond himself was a perfectly imperfect character who frequented opium dens in order to deal with his bouts of insomnia. He’s such a flawed character yet made the story all the more real and satisfying.

I found this to be an extremely solid story with writing that was incredibly engaging. Mayhem is quite the page-turner with very little filler or sections that felt inconsequential. Mayhem is a well-written thriller that I would highly recommend for fans of mysteries, of historical fiction and for those who like just a little bit of horror.

Thanks to the publisher I’m able to offer up 3 copies of Mayhem for 3 lucky readers! I’m mixing things up and trying out my new WordPress giveaway plugin instead of Rafflecopter so all you need to do to enter is leave a comment!

Open to U.S. residents only!
Giveaway ends January 28th, 2014

Drum roll, please.

The 3 winners are:

Ang @ Ang Writes
Rachel @ Paper Cuts
Kara @ Great Imaginations

Congratulations you three! Thanks so much for entering everyone!

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Book Review – The October List by Jeffery Deaver

December 19, 2013 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2013 0 Comments

I received this book free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Book Review – The October List by Jeffery DeaverThe October List by Jeffery Deaver
Published by Grand Cen­tral Publishing on October 1st 2013
Pages: 289
Genres: Mystery, Thriller
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: A Textbook Case, The Kill Room, The Skin Collector

two-half-stars

Gabriela McKenzie's daughter has been kidnapped. In exchange for her safe return, her abductors demand two things: $400,000 in cash and a document known as the "October List." Gabriela has thirty hours to deliver both. Coming up with such a huge sum of money is difficult enough. But Gabriela has no idea what the October List is, much less where it is or how to get it. With the help of Daniel Reardon a charismatic but mysterious man with an agenda of his own Gabriela rushes headlong into a desperate search to solve the puzzle of the October List. And if she fails, she and her daughter will pay a fatal price.

“Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.”
― Søren Kierkegaard

Gabriela awaits news of her daughter who was abducted two days prior. The kidnapper has demanded $400,000 and a document known as ‘The October List’ of which she has been scrambling to identify in order to save her daughter. The door to the apartment opens but it’s not the FBI and it’s not the negotiators; it’s the kidnapper and he’s holding a gun. That’s the thrilling introduction that seemingly gives everything away right off the bat but nothing is as it seems.

The October List is told in reverse chronology, where a tale is told from ending to beginning. Thinking you’re given the answers right off the bat slowly becomes an impossibility as the story progresses and you have to continue altering your opinion as more facts are introduced.  It’s an impressive tale of misdirection.

It worked well in theory but I had a lot of trouble keeping track of who was who because of the lack of distinction between the characters in the apparent attempt to retain the mystery surrounding everything. The story is written at a breakneck speed and you can often find yourself left in its dust as you struggle to catch up, but it does slowly come together and begin to make sense around the halfway point (the book is only 289 pages though so it doesn’t take long). It worked but it didn’t and by the time everything is disclosed I was impressed at the false assumptions the introduction produced.

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Early Review – The Waking Dark by Robin Wasserman

September 5, 2013 Bonnie Book Reviews, Early Review, Read in 2013, YA 8 Comments

I received this book free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Early Review – The Waking Dark by Robin WassermanThe Waking Dark by Robin Wasserman
Published by Knopf Books for Young Readers on September 10th 2013
Pages: 464
Genres: Horror, Mystery, Thriller
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: Girls on Fire

four-stars

A taut, haunting read, The Waking Dark is "a horror story worthy of Stephen King" (Booklist) and will appeal to the readers of Gillian Flynn and Rick Yancey.

They called it the killing day. Twelve people dead, all in the space of a few hours. Five murderers: neighbors, relatives, friends. All of them so normal. All of them seemingly harmless. All of them now dead by their own hand . . . except one. And that one has no answers to offer the shattered town. She doesn't even know why she killed—or whether she'll do it again.

Something is waking in the sleepy town of Oleander's, Kansas—something dark and hungry that lives in the flat earth and the open sky, in the vengeful hearts of upstanding citizens. As the town begins its descent into blood and madness, five survivors of the killing day are the only ones who can stop Oleander from destroying itself. Jule, the outsider at war with the world; West, the golden boy at war with himself; Daniel, desperate for a different life; Cass, who's not sure she deserves a life at all; and Ellie, who believes in sacrifice, fate, and in evil. Ellie, who always goes too far. They have nothing in common. They have nothing left to lose. And they have no way out. Which means they have no choice but to stand and fight, to face the darkness in their town—and in themselves.

The killing day.
The day the devil came to Oleander.
That day.

 Oleander, Kansas is a small, quiet town that was never cause for much attention… until the killing day. The day when twelve people were killed in a few short hours by the hands of their friends and neighbors. Once all surrounding them were dead they then killed themselves having outlived their purpose. One survived to tell her tale, but she remembers nothing of the horrors that she dealt out. When the town is placed under quarantine after a horrific storm does further damage to the town, a darkness wakes in the citizens. The deacon decides this is the perfect opportunity to cleanse the town and the remaining citizens begin to take the law into their own hands.

This book is insanity incarnate. It’s dark and distressing. It’s maddening and stupefying. It’s one of the most horrific books I’ve ever read. It was fantastic. I have never been left more shocked and appalled by a single chapter and that’s just what Robin Wasserman managed to do. The Waking Dark is horror, but it’s not exactly scary. The madness that consumes this small town is more vexing and mortifying than anything and showcases perfectly the mentality of a small town and what can happen when it all goes wrong.

The story is extremely character driven and is told from several different points of view with very distinct characters so it didn’t cause any confusion as its fantastically written. It’s a sordid tale told over the span of a few short weeks with enough violence to last a lifetime. The Waking Dark has drawn comparisons to Stephen King and Gillian Flynn, I believe for good reason. Having read both authors I feel that they both possess a subtle eeriness in their writing, a creepiness and unflinching details that sneaks up on you and takes you by surprise.

I feel it must be said that this is one of the most violent and mature YA books I’ve read and is definitely not meant for a younger crowd. It involves infant murders, detailed meth use, crucifixion and people being burned at the stake (and that’s not even half of the craziness that goes down in these pages). This is not for the faint of heart.

There is so much to say about this story, but so much that needs to be experienced firsthand. I have to say though, I was extremely pleased at how the violence was maintained throughout the story because I figured it would letup at some point, (nope) but I expected it to end in a manner as shocking as the first chapter but it was a bit too tidy of an ending for my liking. Nevertheless, I am most impressed with this author and will be seeking out her past works.

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Waiting on Wednesday – Dear Killer by Katherine Ewell

August 21, 2013 Bonnie Waiting on Wednesday 9 Comments

Waiting on Wednesday – Dear Killer by Katherine EwellDear Killer by Katherine Ewell
Published by Katherine Tegen Books on April 1st 2014
Genres: Horror, Thriller
Amazon
Goodreads

Rule One—Nothing is right, nothing is wrong.
Rule Two—Be careful.
Rule Three—Fight using your legs whenever possible, because they’re the strongest part of your body. Your arms are the weakest.
Rule Four—Hit to kill. The first blow should be the last, if at all possible.
Rule Five—The letters are the law.

Kit takes her role as London’s notorious “Perfect Killer” seriously. The letters and cash that come to her via a secret mailbox are not a game; choosing who to kill is not an impulse decision. Every letter she receives begins with “Dear Killer,” and every time Kit murders, she leaves a letter with the dead body. Her moral nihilism and thus her murders are a way of life—the only way of life she has ever known.

But when a letter appears in the mailbox that will have the power to topple Kit’s convictions as perfectly as she commits her murders, she must make a decision: follow the only rules she has ever known, or challenge Rule One, and go from there.

Katherine Ewell’s Dear Killer is a sinister psychological thriller that explores the thin line between good and evil, and the messiness of that inevitable moment when life contradicts everything you believe.

Psychological thrillers always interest me and this one has a Dexter and ‘I Hunt Killers’ feel to it I think… will definitely be picking this one up. 
 
What are you waiting on this Wednesday?
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Early Review + Giveaway! Night Film by Marisha Pessl

August 15, 2013 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Early Review, Giveaways, Read in 2013 6 Comments

I received this book free from Library Thing, the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Early Review + Giveaway! Night Film by Marisha PesslNight Film by Marisha Pessl
Published by Random House on August 20th 2013
Pages: 602
Genres: Horror, Mystery-Contemporary, Thriller
Format: ARC
Source: Library Thing, the Publisher
Amazon
Goodreads


five-stars

Brilliant, haunting, breathtakingly suspenseful, Night Film is a superb literary thriller by The New York Times bestselling author of the blockbuster debut Special Topics in Calamity Physics.

On a damp October night, beautiful young Ashley Cordova is found dead in an abandoned warehouse in lower Manhattan. Though her death is ruled a suicide, veteran investigative journalist Scott McGrath suspects otherwise. As he probes the strange circumstances surrounding Ashley’s life and death, McGrath comes face-to-face with the legacy of her father: the legendary, reclusive cult-horror-film director Stanislas Cordova—a man who hasn’t been seen in public for more than thirty years.

For McGrath, another death connected to this seemingly cursed family dynasty seems more than just a coincidence. Though much has been written about Cordova’s dark and unsettling films, very little is known about the man himself.

Driven by revenge, curiosity, and a need for the truth, McGrath, with the aid of two strangers, is drawn deeper and deeper into Cordova’s eerie, hypnotic world.

The last time he got close to exposing the director, McGrath lost his marriage and his career. This time he might lose even more.

Night Film, the gorgeously written, spellbinding new novel by the dazzlingly inventive Marisha Pessl, will hold you in suspense until you turn the final page.

‘It’s funny how the night that changes your life forever starts out like all the others.’

The plot at it’s very basic state: Scott McGrath was an investigative journalist until his life was ruined by Stanislas Cordova, a man renowned for his underground films. His obsession over the man has never quite dissipated and when he hears that his daughter, Ashley Cordova, has possible committed suicide, his curiosity of the man is once again piqued. This is such an intricate and in-depth mystery that is so very easy to spoil.

‘Within every elaborate lie, a kernel of truth.’

There is a brilliant incorporation of visuals into the text that may be construed as extraneous but managed to bring the story more to life and added a hint of fact to make it all the more real. This mystery is anything but standard and completely took me by surprise. It has everything: grittiness, hints of the paranormal, a surprising drollness and an intensity that will leave you gasping.

‘Just when you think you’ve hit rock bottom, you realize you’re standing on another trapdoor.’

It will hook you from the first page, of that I have no doubt. It will leave you mesmerized. The mystery will leave you bewildered. The possibilities will leave you astounded. It will scare you. There is a shocking blend of vehemence and subtlety that will mystify you. There is no end to what this book will do to you, physically and emotionally. It’s a story about searching for the truth and realizing that nothing is what it seems. It will leave you in doubt.

Night Film is a haunting and intoxicating story that treads the line between science and mystical that will burrow into your very core and leave you questioning everything.

This is for my personal (ARC) copy of Night Film.
Open to U.S. addresses only. Sorry international followers!

Giveaway ends August 29th, 2013!

To enter use the Rafflecopter form below.
Remember to come back for more entry opportunities daily!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Early Review – Parasite (Parasitology #1) by Mira Grant

July 26, 2013 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Early Review, Read in 2013 2 Comments

I received this book free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Early Review – Parasite (Parasitology #1) by Mira GrantParasite by Mira Grant
Series: Parasitology #1
Published by Orbit on October 29th 2013
Pages: 5112
Genres: Dystopian/Post-Apocalyptic, Horror, Sci-fi, Thriller
Format: eARC
Source: the Publisher
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: Feed, Deadline, Countdown: A Newsflesh Novella

three-stars

A decade in the future, humanity thrives in the absence of sickness and disease.

We owe our good health to a humble parasite - a genetically engineered tapeworm developed by the pioneering SymboGen Corporation. When implanted, the tapeworm protects us from illness, boosts our immune system - even secretes designer drugs. It's been successful beyond the scientists' wildest dreams. Now, years on, almost every human being has a SymboGen tapeworm living within them.

But these parasites are getting restless. They want their own lives...and will do anything to get them.

“There’s one more good thing about being the girl who lived because her genetically engineered tapeworm refused to let her die: I lived. That made everything else possible. Everything else in the world.”

In the not so distant future, SymboGen Corporation has developed a genetically modified tapeworm that is designed to replace your daily medications/vitamins and keep you healthier than normal. SymboGen’s marketing of the tapeworm has been so successful that almost every single human on Earth has one. When a sickness begins to spread rapidly, it becomes clear that the tapeworms are no longer performing their assigned duties… but what is to blame?

“Human and implant fit together like they’d been designed for one another. In a very real way, they had been.” – Dr. Steven Banks

What worked really well in Parasite was the obvious research behind parasites and the science regarding them that was conducted. It didn’t always make complete sense and I’m not positive that all details were completely accurate but it felt for the most part legitimate. It started off feeling very sci-fi horror and was definitely creepy unfortunately did come off in the end like a cheesy sci-fi movie but it was still well done.

What ended up being a big disappointment were the various plot holes and inconsistencies that I noticed throughout the novel.

“We’ve been over this before. I have no memory of the accident itself. The first thing I remember is waking up in the hospital, surrounded by strangers.”

The main character Sal was involved in a car accident and after 10 days she woke up from her coma yet those were her first memories. She couldn’t remember being involved in the accident, she couldn’t remember her own name, she even had to relearn how to speak and write and understand English. She was practically a newborn baby.

Major Plot Hole: If she doesn’t remember anything until she woke up in the hospital, that doesn’t explain why does she have such a strong fear of cars? She was involved in a car accident so any normal person waking up would have developed this fear but she stated several times that her first memory was waking up in the hospital. Her fear is far too great to have simply been a byproduct of what someone told her happened to her.

I had a few other examples but I felt they were too spoilery to be included. I will say, one in particular was given a single sentence as back-story to explain which I didn’t feel was sufficient information and it seemed too coincidental.

Parasite is incredibly similar to Mira Grant’s other popular series, the Newsflesh Trilogy. Usually I would follow that up with “fans of Newsflesh will love this” however, I found this to actually be a fault as the similarities between the two were just too similar. The plot: simply exchange zombies for parasites/tapeworms and you had the same premise. Also, the Newsflesh trilogy dealt with corrupt politicians where Parasite dealt with corrupt doctors, scientists and greedy corporations. The ending also felt fairly similar in scope but obviously I won’t go into detail regarding that.

In regards to the ending, this was my biggest issue. The story builds in intensity and you’re left anticipating a spectacular ending, however, the ending ended up being something I had figured out from the very first chapter so it was a huge letdown more than anything. (And I don’t think I made a lucky guess, I thought this was something that was fairly obvious from the very beginning).

While Parasite was exciting and kept me on the edge of my seat, there was an absence of consistency and the writing felt stilted and choppy. There was a much-needed flow that this was lacking and I think it attributed to the plot holes. I believe maybe too much material was trying to be covered that necessary answers weren’t given when they should have been. Of course I read an early version of the book so I can only hope that maybe it gets a bit more polished before publication.

While Parasite didn’t capture my heart like the Newsflesh Trilogy did, this is still an entertaining and horrific sci-fi read that will leave you squirming.

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Book Review – Inferno (Robert Langdon #4) by Dan Brown

June 22, 2013 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Read in 2013 4 Comments

Book Review – Inferno (Robert Langdon #4) by Dan BrownInferno by Dan Brown
Series: Robert Langdon #4
Published by Knopf Doubleday on May 14th 2013
Pages: 482
Genres: Mystery, Thriller
Format: eBook
Source: Library
Amazon
Goodreads


one-star

In his international blockbusters The Da Vinci Code, Angels & Demons, and The Lost Symbol, Dan Brown masterfully fused history, art, codes, and symbols. In this riveting new thriller, Brown returns to his element and has crafted his highest-stakes novel to date.

In the heart of Italy, Harvard professor of symbology, Robert Langdon, is drawn into a harrowing world centered on one of history's most enduring and mysterious literary masterpieces...Dante's Inferno.

Against this backdrop, Langdon battles a chilling adversary and grapples with an ingenious riddle that pulls him into a landscape of classic art, secret passageways, and futuristic science. Drawing from Dante's dark epic poem, Langdon races to find answers and decide whom to trust...before the world is irrevocably altered.

Fans of this series have been waiting 4 years for the next installment. Yes, The Lost Symbol came out in 2009. Unfortunately, this does not read like he spent the full 4 years invested in making sure this was a masterpiece (he actually claims in an interview he spent 3 years researching this novel. *cough*bullshit*cough*). Inferno consists of a horribly muddled and dramatic plot, twists in the story that don’t even make sense and a whole slew of sections straight out of an encyclopedia.

This Dante tale is anything but Divine (but is a bit of a comedy) – pun intended. Now, don’t get me wrong. I am a fan. I know most people shun his works but I am admittedly a big fan of The Da Vinci Code. Looking back I can’t say for sure if I would still enjoy the novel today considering I read it ages ago and I’ve become much more of a critical reader, but I do keep picking up these books for some reason or another.

The main issue with Inferno is the fact that this book could easily be half in length if there wasn’t so much unnecessary detailing. He describes where they are in such vivid detail but it isn’t always relevant. With Angels & Demons and The Da Vinci Code, the descriptions were useful in finding their next clue, where they needed to go next to obtain the next piece of the puzzle. While the descriptions are interesting it detracts from the actual story and makes Langdon appear to be some crazed tour-guide while he’s supposed to be in the middle of running for his life. The overall smugness he has bestowed upon Robert Langdon is obnoxious and disrupting.

“…although as an architecture enthusiast, he found it almost unthinkable to rush a trip along the Grand Canal.”

DUDE. PEOPLE ARE TRYING TO KILL YOU. YOU’RE A FUCKING MORON. Yet despite his constant admiring of statuary and architecture he is constantly able to evade capture and certain death. DUN DUN DUN

The second issue was the strange, short chapters. They were always ended on some dramatic discovery that induced more eye-rolling than gasps of shock. The choice of position in breaks made it more melodramatic and annoying than a respite from the intensity of the story. And speaking of melodramatic and annoying, this book possesses one of the most absurd and histrionic endings I have ever had the misfortune of reading. I believe Mr. Brown had an intriguing concept for a story line, but he may have bit off more than he could chew because the execution of this story was truly abysmal.

I could write a full review based on what I like to consider the ‘lines-of-ridiculousness’. While I’ll spare you the majority of them, I couldn’t resist including a few. (I refuse to suffer alone.)

‘Normally, Langdon’s visits to the Palazzo Vecchio had begun here on the Piazza della Signoria, which, despite its overabundance of phalluses, had always been one of his favorite plazas in all of Europe.’

‘The statute before them depicted an obese, naked dwark straddling a giant turtle. The dwarf’s testicles were squashed against the turtle’s shell, and the turtle’s mouth was dribbling water, as if he were ill.’

And I’ll leave you with this fabulous Fifty Shades quip. Yes. You heard me right.

“Robert, we’re in book publishing. We don’t have access to private jets.”
“We both know you’re lying, my friend.”
Faukman sighed. “Okay, let me rephrase that. We don’t have access to private jets for authors of tomes about religious history. If you want to write Fifty Shades of Iconography, we can talk.”

So why is this #1 on the NYT bestseller’s list? Well, his past works while not of superior literary quality were still enjoyable enough so I’m assuming people just expected more (and expected him to maybe advance as a writer?) And of course, with the digs taken against the Vatican I’m sure it’s only a matter of time until they decide to ban this one too and spur even more sales.

I will occasionally recommend a particular drink that fits well with the book. In this case? I recommend ALL THE DRINKS. You’ll need them to get through this ridiculous disaster of a book.

 

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Early Review – The Kill Room (Lincoln Rhyme #10) by Jeffery Deaver

May 31, 2013 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Early Review, Read in 2013 0 Comments

I received this book free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Early Review – The Kill Room (Lincoln Rhyme #10) by Jeffery DeaverThe Kill Room by Jeffery Deaver
Series: Lincoln Rhyme #10
Published by Grand Cen­tral Publishing on June 4th 2013
Pages: 477
Genres: Detective, Mystery, Thriller
Format: ARC
Source: the Publisher
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: A Textbook Case, The October List, The Skin Collector

three-half-stars

It was a "million-dollar bullet," a sniper shot delivered from over a mile away. Its victim was no ordinary mark: he was a United States citizen, targeted by the United States government, and assassinated in the Bahamas.

The nation's most renowned investigator and forensics expert, Lincoln Rhyme, is drafted to investigate. While his partner, Amelia Sachs, traces the victim's steps in Manhattan, Rhyme leaves the city to pursue the sniper himself. As details of the case start to emerge, the pair discovers that not all is what it seems.

When a deadly, knife-wielding assassin begins systematically eliminating all evidence--including the witnesses--Lincoln's investigation turns into a chilling battle of wits against a cold-blooded killer.

Once again, Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs have been asked to help investigate a crime, yet this is one of their hardest to date. The victim is a United States citizen that had been recently targeted by the U.S. Government and is found to be assassinated in the Bahamas. The biggest problem they face is the complete lack of evidence and the fact that someone appears to be two steps ahead of them and is going back and covering up their tracks by destroying evidence and eliminating witnesses.

‘He didn’t believe he’d ever had a case like this, where the evidence was so fragmentary and sparse. Bits, scraps, observations, 180-degree changes in direction. Nothing else…’

As is common with Jeffery Deaver novels, the mystery is intricate and detailed and unfurls slowly building in intensity with each turned page. These details may seem superfluous but are simply small pieces of a very large puzzle. I really loved the complexity of this mystery though and how despite the lack of major evidence even the smallest pieces inevitably helped solve the mystery regardless. The Kill Room focuses mainly on political reasoning and while I wasn’t completely sold on the premise, it still was an impressively detailed mystery.

‘I have a bad feeling about this one, Rhyme…’

While I thoroughly enjoy having the story told from the point-of-view of Lincoln Rhyme as his ability to solve crimes based on seemingly inconsequential evidence is uncanny, the switch-up in points-of-view between him and the man they’re hunting for was the perfect touch. It definitely added an unsettling touch as this ‘bad guy’ is incredibly disturbing.

Yet another palpable mystery from an incredibly talented crime writer, The Kill Room proves that this series is far from losing steam.

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Early Review – The Girl Who Was Supposed to Die by April Henry

May 16, 2013 Bonnie Adult, Book Reviews, Early Review, Read in 2013 4 Comments

I received this book free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Early Review – The Girl Who Was Supposed to Die by April HenryThe Girl Who Was Supposed to Die by April Henry
Published by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR) on June 11th 2013
Pages: 224
Genres: Mystery, Thriller
Format: eARC
Source: Edelweiss
Amazon
Goodreads

Also by this author: The Night She Disappeared

three-stars

“Take her out back and finish her off.”

She doesn’t know who she is. She doesn’t know where she is, or why. All she knows when she comes to in a ransacked cabin is that there are two men arguing over whether or not to kill her.

And that she must run.

In her riveting style, April Henry crafts a nail-biting thriller involving murder, identity theft, and biological warfare. Follow Cady and Ty (her accidental savior turned companion), as they race against the clock to stay alive.

‘[…]my mind shut down. Went blank. Went someplace where I wouldn’t have to remember.’

What would you do if you woke up to find you had been kidnapped? What would you do if you somehow manage to escape but realize you have no idea where you were? What would you do if you didn’t have any idea who you were? The Girl Who Was Supposed to Die is a riveting thriller of a girl who has to piece together the past so she can live to see the future.

I’ve read April Henry’s ‘The Night She Disappeared’ and it’s an incredibly short yet fast-paced mystery which I really enjoyed. To me, ‘The Girl Who Was Supposed to Die’ is also short and fast-paced yet more complex and required more pages in order to properly flush out the mystery. The pieces of the puzzle don’t start coming together until near the very end and once the pieces started forming they left me with an unnaturally rushed feeling that I felt could have been avoided with more explanation/pages.

There were a few issues I had in particular:
The ‘bad guys’ were inherently bad and lacked any sort of complexity thus making them quite a bore. Plus, it always makes me giggle when the bad guys completely reveal all their plans right before they intent on killing you.
Also, there was a strange and unnecessary reference to a gay character.
‘His voice swoops up and down. He sounds more gay than before. I wonder if he’s doing it deliberately – to make them think there would be no reason for him to give a girl shelter.’
Which… makes zero sense. Because he’s a gay man he couldn’t possibly have any ‘girl’ friends? Or even possible care about their well-being? That passage just struck me as completely irrelevant.

Also, there wasn’t a love-interest exactly but there was a male character that became involved in her drama trouble. After meeting him while trying to hide from the ‘bad guys’ he realizes she’s in dire need of help and assists in getting her past them. In my opinion, that should have been the end of their relationship but instead this guy basically risks the possible destruction of any future he may have for this girl he doesn’t know. It just wasn’t plausible. There was a slight explanation given for his ‘need’ to help her and it kind of make sense but still didn’t completely work for me in way of explanation.

Despite my issues, I did still mostly enjoy The Girl Who Was Supposed to Die. It is fast-paced, exciting, and definitely suspenseful.

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