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review 2017-09-24 16:45
Freebie Square Read
Wolves in the Dark (Varg Veum Series) - ... Wolves in the Dark (Varg Veum Series) - Gunnar Staalesen,Don Bartlett

Disclaimer: ARC via Netgalley

 

                Varg Veum is a literary character that I first meet though television.  MHZ had the Varg Veum movies on, and I watched them.  So, I started reading the series in a haphazard fashion, or in other words, totally out of order.

 

                This installment finds Veum coming out of a drinking addiction fueled by depression after a death.  In part, some of his sobering comes from meeting a woman (who has a daughter) and part of it comes from being accused of child pedophilia. 

 

                The novel opens with the arrival of the police to arrest Veum and search his apartment, and the book stays to the break neck speed.  In a cell, Veum is forced to remember as much as his drunk years as he can because someone, he doesn’t know who, is setting him up.

 

                Not many people believe him.  Strangely enough his new girlfriend is one of those who does.      

 

                I guess he is lucky that way, for those that have known him the longest, by and large, view him as guilty.

 

                On one hand, the story is a non-stop thriller.  It starts with a bust and keeps going.  The pace never seems to slow, not surprising when Veum isn’t given the time to catch his breath.  The characters are well written, possibly not the girlfriend who seems a bit too trusting, yet she is not stupid.  Even though at times it seems like too much coincidental.  The ending too, is on level, a typical white male ending.  It is difficult to image an immigrant or even a woman, even in Norway, having the same reaction as Varg Veum to the final outcome.

 

                In part, that might be part of the problem with this book – Veum never seems quite aware of the societal pressures, norms, what have you, that contribute or allow the trafficking and abuse of children (and women) to occur.  On one hand, there are times when a reader wants to smack Veum for his cluelessness on the matter.  Doesn’t he realize, the reader might wonder under her breath, in particular when he is confronting woman.  Then one wonders if this genius on the part of Staalesen.  What better way to show a problem?  There is no preaching, no holier than though.  And this provokes more thought.

 

                This book will most likely get less attention then Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.  A shame considering that it is better written and far more powerful for its subtlety.

 

 

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review 2017-09-24 05:33
Don't Let Go
Don't Let Go - Harlan Coben

By:  Harlan Coben 

ISBN: 978-0525955115

Publisher: Dutton

Publication Date: 9/26/2017 

Format: Hardcover 

My Rating:  5 Stars 

 
Master storyteller, Harlan Coben returns following (2016) Fool Me Once and Home (Myron Bolitar #11) –both 5 stars; with his latest . . . Drumroll . . . His 31st novel! DON’T LET GO. Fans keep coming back for more; and the author consistently delivers, every time with another twisty explosive suspense thriller. 

Vigilante justice . . .

Note: — Have no clue how this author cranks out so many books and TV shows I suspect he may have a few clones. They definitely possess his fine talent for signature twists and suspense (oh and did I mention “emotional” as well). 

DON’T LET GO, most definitely will "not let you go" until this mystery is solved. Missing persons have always been intriguing. What led them to go missing? The circumstances. Where have they been? Dead or alive?

Coben excels with dramas surrounding this topic. His crime thrillers are more than just murders. Rich in character. Not just action. Motives, thoughts, fears, desperation. From the victims to the family members. They are desperate for answers. For any clues to provide answers.

Meet New Jersey detective Napoleon "Nap" Dumas. Is there more to this character than meets the eye.? An unreliable narrator? Dark and mysterious with a dual role. 

He is haunted by events of the past some fifteen years earlier. He is still mourning his twin brother, Leo, and Leo's girlfriend, Diana (cheerleader). They were found dead on the town's railroad tracks one night during their senior year. Accidental or suicide? 

Soon after, Nap's own girlfriend, Maura Wells, disappeared. Was this a coincidence? Why did she choose this night to disappear? Were the events connected? It was nearing the last few weeks of high school in the suburban Westbridge when the events occurred. Booze, sex, drugs? 
 
 



Now Nap’s past connects with the present when Maura’s fingerprints are discovered in a car driven by a murdered Pennsylvania cop. Rex Canton was shot.

To further complicate matters. Leo, Diana, Maura, and Rex were all members of Westbrook High’s Conspiracy Club (a secret society for goofballs and like-minded nerds). 

Then, Hank, another member of the club is murdered. Leo, Diana, Rex, Hank and where is Beth? 

Nap is obsessed with connecting the dots. He soon learns Beth Lashley (the last of the surviving members of the former club), is missing. 

An old abandoned military base in town the club members were investigating. The Conspiracy Club (all geek geniuses) wanted to find out what happened after it closed.

Someone is killing off the old Conspiracy Club members. They have been killed before their thirty-fifth birthday. 

After meeting with Augie, (Diane’s father) a police captain and mentor, he soon suspects none of these incidents were accidental. The denial. He lost a beautiful vibrant seventeen-year-old daughter. She had been his life. 

What secrets could the Conspiracy Club have discovered?What did they see? Who is out to get the club members? What did (do) they know? 

Rumors were: a secret lab, experiments, Nazi scientist, mind control, LSD, UFOs, nuclear weapons? A government conspiracy, a teen prank gone wrong, or something more sadistic? The big question . . . Why would they wait fifteen years to kill the remainder?

Wow, this was once again a gripping page-turner. Coben is a master at churning up the past. The past does not stay buried. Regretable actions. If only we could get a do-over.

I enjoy how Coben always gives readers an inside view of the inspiration behind his novels. (legend -a Nike missile control center with nuclear capabilities near a school)

In addition to his award-winning books (if this is not enough), Netflix subscribers can now stream Coben’s first TV drama, "The Five." A 10-part series starring a group of friends who made a tragic mistake in 1995. A five-year-old Jesse gets in the way. Twenty years later at a crime scene and his DNA shows up. The dark secrets are unraveled. Read More 

Subscribed: currently binge-watching while multi-tasking: INTRIGUING! Something else to keep us in suspense and to look forward to: "Safe" his next project due next year. 

A very special thank you to Dutton and NetGalley for an advanced reading copy. 

JDCMustReadBooks

 

 

 

 

 

 

Source: www.judithdcollinsconsulting.com/single-post/2017/02/02/Dont-Let-Go
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review 2017-09-23 04:00
Don't Let Go by Harlan Coben
Don't Let Go - Harlan Coben

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

This was oh so good! I have been a long time fan of Harlan Coben's work so I went into this book with some pretty high expectations. This book met all of those expectations. It was literally a book that I did not want to put down and I ended up reading it cover to cover in less than a day. The story grabbed me from the very beginning and didn't let go until the last page. This book was filled with all of the twists and turns that I have come to expect from Harlan Coben. 

The story is told from Nap's point of view. Nap is a New Jersey Detective with his own sense of right and wrong. His twin brother, Leo, and Leo's girlfriend, Diana, died together back in high school. Most people think that it was a double suicide but nobody really seems to know what happened. Nap's high school girlfriend, Maura, disappeared at the same time as his twin brother's death. Nap has always been somewhat desperate to learn what really happened.

When Maura's fingerprints are discovered at the murder scene of another high school classmate, Nap starts trying to piece everything together. He learns that not everything is as he thought it was and secrets have been kept from him by those he thought he could trust. As he learns more about that night, he realizes how much he really doesn't know. Can he piece together everything from all of those years ago before it it too late?

I thought that the writing was great. I loved the fact that I never could guess where this book was going. There were so many twists and turns in this novel that the excitement level of the story never wavered. I was truly surprised by so many of the revelations and found myself reading the book at a furious pace to find out what would happen next. The pacing of the book was perfectly done with action scenes spaced out around more thoughtful ones. I felt Nap's desperation to learn the truth behind what happened to his twin and wanted everything to come out okay in the end. I was delighted to see one of my favorite characters, Myron Bolitar, make a quick appearance in the story. 

I would highly recommend this book to fans of mysteries with lots of twists and turns. This book was very fast paced and incredibly hard to put down. I can't wait to read more of Harlan Coben's work!

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Penguin Publishing Group - Dutton Books via Edelweiss.

Initial Thoughts
This was oh so good. It grabbed me from the beginning and didn't let go until the very end. So many twist and turns that I was never quite sure which direction the story was going to go. I must say that I was absolutely thrilled when Myron made a quick appearance in this story.

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review 2017-09-21 17:44
If the Creek Don't Rise: A Novel - Leah Chase Weiss Award from the National Council of Christians and Jews

The blurb was correct on this very entertaining book. I did get way down deep with my feelings for the characters and the setting of this book.

I really feel as though the author did a great job with the characters and making me feel as though I was really there in those hollers and mountains. The dialect used for the characters just really brought it all together.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. Sad that the women had to "take things into their own hands" to get rid of their problems.

Thanks to Sourcebooks Landmark and Net Galley for providing me with a free e-galley in exchange for an honest, unbiased review.

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review 2017-09-21 17:09
A Powerful Middle-Grade Read About Africa, Intrigue, and Health Issues
Mosquitoes Don't Bite Me - Pendred Noyce Mosquitoes Don't Bite Me - Pendred Noyce

Mosquitoes Don't Bite Me presents an unusual protagonist in the form of half-Kenyan seventh-grader Nala, whose mother is in a wheelchair. Nala has an unusual condition: mosquitoes don't bite her - ever.

 

This, in and of itself, wouldn't seem to be a big deal; but her friend's father is head of a large drug company, and when he discovers the truth about her during a school project, she becomes involved in a mosquito research effort that brings her to her family homeland, Kenya, to consider mosquito reactions in her father's family.

 

A kidnapping, the plight of peoples affected by deadly mosquitoes that carry malaria, and the quest for a new insect repellant that holds the power to change lives contributes to a book that reaches far beyond the story of one girl's strange condition and into the social and political struggles of an African nation.

 

Mosquitoes Don't Bite Me may sound complicated for a middle-grade read, but its insights are perfectly tailored for ages 9-12; from its discussions of sickle cell anemia and other health challenges to circumstances of poverty, health, and a personal hunt for truth and identity.

 

It also excels in painting a vivid portrait of desperate people who will do anything to save the lives of loved ones, blending family encounters and issues with bigger questions of economics and problems which arise when business interests clash with social conditions.

Heady reading for kids? Yes; but when packaged in the form of an adventure and exploration, these issues come alive, making Mosquitoes Don't Bite Me an unusually thought-provoking read highly recommended for young fiction readers who will receive more than action alone.

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