Lindsey is battling with the newest President of the Library Board. She is abrasive, controlling and mean. She is on the attack, trying to get rid of Lindsey and all her staff, especially those who don't meet her standards of dress and decorum. She is also demanding that places contracted to make food, flowers, etc for the Dinner in the Stacks event to earn money for the library, do the service for free. She has created so much ill will that it is no surprise that after being horrible at the event, she is found dead in the stacks, having been stabbed with a steak knife from the event. Paula, the woman that Olive (Boyle...listening it sounded like Olive Oil, Popeye's girlfriend) was tormenting the worst, is thought to be to blame for the death and the mean girls (Olive's friends) also blame Lindsey and Paula. When people start making life miserable for Paula, Lindsey breaks her vow to not investigate anymore and looks into who would want Olive dead.
This was so fun. It had a whole cast of new characters, including the visiting cupcake bakers from AZ (Fairytale Cupcakes....Cupcake Mysteries, the author's other series). It also dealt with all kinds of other information. I woke up and started working on finishing this story because I was invested in knowing who did the deed.
I think for the most part the mystery aspect of the book was good. For once you couldn't figure out who done it until the very end. It also made sense why Roarke was involved with this one. However, the nonsense with the Oscars and Eve somehow being able to beat down a former military guy who kept himself in shape by saying her training with the master is what helped her made me irritated and also laugh. Oh wait, I have to laugh again cause Roarke with one punch was able to knock him out cold.
"Leverage in Death" is book #47 in the "In Death" series by JD Robb. It's been a few weeks since the events in the last book. And now apparently it has to be February/March since the Icove Case that Nadine adapted into a screenplay is now up for Oscars. "Leverage" starts off with a man, Paul Rogan, who walks into a conference room and blows himself and others up. At first it seems that Rogan had to be a disgruntled employee, however, Eve and the rest of her squad quickly find out that someone forced Rogan to do it, under duress. When Eve starts pulling back the layers on this case, another one pops up with a fear that even more people out there are going to be harmed in order for the perpetrators to make a killing by those who are harmed/killed.
Okay, here comes praise time. I really did like how leverage in the Stock Market, playing the margins, etc. came into play here. It made sense for Roarke to be the consultant on this one since Eve knows nothing about the Stock Market or how leverage comes into play. I also loved though that Baxter knew about the Stock Market enough that he was able to provide some interesting points too.
The perpetrators on this one were not easily picked out while reading. There are a lot of suspects in this one and a lot of characters. We get enough information about everyone involved that you are going to have some type of feeling towards these people. Also thank you for once not having vulnerable women raped. It felt like every book in this series lately has had that aspect of that included, and I didn't miss it one bit.
I also loved the what if aspect of this case. What if you were told your family was going to die if you didn't do something horrific in turn. Could you, would you do it? I loved that Eve and Roarke had that conversation.
We get to immerse ourselves more into the world of the e-geeks and I loved that Feeny calls all of his people boys. I cracked up at Callender giving him grief over that.
And it was nice to see Baxter and Trueheart more in this one too. Baxter even gets to be alongside Eve when she goes into the box to interrogate the suspects.
And for once the fight didn't work my nerves on this one. FYI, I was totally on Roarke's side on that one.
Now here comes what annoyed me/took me out of the book.
So even though we have some people hell-bent on blowing people up, we can't forget for a second that Peabody and McNabb deserve to go to the Oscars for reasons and then we have a whole stupid subplot about them still being allowed to go though the perpetrators were not caught. At least we didn't have Peabody acting like an ass like she did during "Kindred in Death" when she kept talking about how an active murderer who was raping people needed to be dealt with and arrested prior to Charles and Louise's wedding otherwise true love would die.
Speaking of Charles and Louise, they are barely in these books anymore. We have a throwaway line how one of the crime scenes is near their place.
The whole thing with the Oscars was maddening enough, but now Robb is setting it up that we are now going to be hearing about the next movie in the series soon since Nadine wrote a great manuscript and I maybe rolled my eyes a million times. And then somehow Mavis was up for an Oscars for Best Song and this is the first time it was mentioned. I really wish that Robb had never included that whole movie into her books and now it seems like we are being told there's at least two more coming out.
I also can't get over how Eve can beat a male suspect who outweighs her and is taller than her in hand to hand. I would rather forget that Roarke bought her sessions with the master and all that.
Mira continues to just be there to be Eve's Greek chorus. If she's not actually going to be doing profiles that disagree with Eve and or Eve being wrong once in a while, I have no idea why she is even used.
Thomas Thorne is finally ready to confess his feelings for his business partner and best friend of twelve years, Gwyn Weaver (he has no choice, really), but ends up drugged and naked in his bed with a murdered woman by his side.
None of his friends believe he did it, but someone obviously has a grudge against him. A grudge so big, they're willing to dig around his past, dredging up painful memories, and putting everybody he loves, putting Gwyn in danger.
This book obviously marks the end of the Baltimore-based books (we're moving to California next with Taylor's adoptive sister, Daisy) and it was lovely seeing all the old friends and faces again. The only two missing were Grayson and Daphne, but they were there in spirit as the others fought against time and death itself in order to figure out who and why was making Thorne suffer and how to stop them.
I've been curious about Thorne since he first appeared on scene and I'm glad he didn't suffer a character transplant in his book as some of the previous seemingly larger-than-life heroes. He was compassionate and loyal, willing and able to do anything to protect those he loved and cared about, and I was glad the tough exterior he was known for was just a cover for the marshmallow-y inside.
It's a real pity about the heroine, though. I didn't like Gwyn. There've been plenty of KR heroines who's gone through what she's been through, but somehow she felt she was different, somehow special and unique, making her way too whiny for my taste. She was also incredibly selfish. Someone wanted to hurt Thorne, but she always seemed to make everything about herself and her feelings.
As the story progressed, and she finally pulled her head out of her ass about Thorne and their relationship, I actually started to like her, only to grit my teeth at her inability just to tell everything up front. I didn't get the secret keeping and I hated she told Thorne the truth about her past only when she feared it would come out anyway.
The suspense also left much to be desired, which is surprising for a KR book. It felt like it was all over the place, the twists and turns making it rather convoluted and disjointed. The main villain was rather disappointing, since he couldn't keep his hands firmly on the reins, but trusted all those other people to do his dirty work. People make mistakes. The more people, the more mistakes. It made him appear weak and quite a caricature, unintentionally similar to the Bond villains of old with much talk and not enough action.
It made the positive ending a given, instead of making the reader tremble alongside the characters.
This book definitely wasn't what I've come to expect from Karen Rose, but hopefully it's just a fluke.
Series: Barbara Holloway #1
The courtroom drama portion was interesting, but the later part of the book fell pretty flat, especially the ending. I'm not sure if I'll bother picking up any of the rest of in the series. Basically, Barbara Holloway is defending Nell Kendricks, who is accused of murdering her estranged husband (after he's been off the grid for 7 years), but after the trial the story takes a bit of a nosedive. The romance definitely didn't bring much to the table either.
I was thinking of counting this for Halloween Bingo, but I'm not sure for which square. I was thinking of maybe "Terror in a small town" because several of the main characters live out in a small community in the woods, basically, but I'm not sure if it's a bit of a stretch. There's always the Free Square, of course.